Darnell Dunn, a junior
forward and a first-year men's basketball player after transferring here this
year, discusses what led him to play for Pepperdine and how he hopes to improve
throughout the rest of the season:
Q: How did you start playing basketball?
A: Basketball has always been in my family. My dad played in college, my uncles and my mom also played basketball. My dad was also a high school coach so I've always been around it.
Q: How were your first two basketball seasons at your previous colleges?
A: They were definitely learning experiences. I played at the junior college level as well as the Division II level so they were both really different. Playing the game is fun, no matter what, but it's even better now that I can play at the Division I level.
Q: How did you choose to come all the way to California, being a North Carolina native?
A: After I had a solid season in junior college, Pepperdine was one of the schools that caught interest in me. I've always liked adventuring and seeing new places so it felt right. Playing in the WCC was also something that I thought would be really cool.
Q: How has your first semester at Pepperdine been going?
A: It's been interesting. It's definitely an adjustment going back to a four-year college after being at a two-year one. The main focus for me has really been the school aspect because it's more intense than what I'm used to. I've also been trying to balance school with my basketball schedule.
Q: What is your role on the Pepperdine basketball team?
A: Right now, my role has been to come off the bench and bring energy and score when possible. Also, to defend and get rebounds.
Q: You used to play with current Lakers player, Brandon Ingram, in high school. Have you stayed in touch with him and gone to any of his games since moving out here?
A: I've been to a few of his games. He's like my brother, we grew up together so it's nice to just hang out with him on the weekends.
Q: What are you looking forward to for the rest of the season?
A: For us to get back on track. We've had a rocky start to the season and we're trying to find ourselves right now with a young team and a lot of new players. We're just hoping to turn this ship around. I know what we are capable of as a team and we haven't shown that yet.
Q: What are your goals for the rest of your time at Pepperdine?
A: My priority is to graduate and get my degree because I know that basketball isn't going to be forever, but I would also like to maximize my basketball potential and see where that can take me.